Dramatic video has emerged of several cases in which Victoria police have allegedly gone too far, with people bashed and brutalised during arrests.
Now Victoria Police’s internal investigation of complaints is being questioned.
ABC News reports:
John installed a CCTV system at his house in Melbourne’s northern suburbs after it was burgled a few years back.
It was supposed to capture robbers — not police.
But the video it recorded in October 2017 shows a number of Victoria Police officers dragging the disability pensioner into his front yard, where he is pinned to the ground.
One officer repeatedly beats John across the lower legs.
“I thought I was going to die,” John told 7.30.
John was ill and distressed, withdrawing from the pain medication he has been on since his back surgery.
He has anxiety and depression and his health carers called emergency services, concerned by his deteriorating mental state.
He also has a minor assault on his police record from 10 years ago.
Police dispatch notes warned that John may confront police and attempt to provoke them into shooting him.
‘Open the door, John’
From behind his locked screen door John repeatedly pleaded with police to leave him alone.
But police threatened to break down the door.
When John did open the door police allege he came at them with two raised fists.
But the video shows him appearing to try to fend off an officer approaching him with a canister of capsicum spray.
Moments later, he was pinned to the ground by the police. One sprayed him with the capsicum centimetres from his face.
There was a watering can nearby that could have been used to wash off the capsicum spray.
Instead, one of the officers got the garden hose and aimed it at John’s face at maximum pressure.
“He’s aiming for my nostrils and it’s going into my lungs — and that’s when I started choking from the water and from the hot mace going into my respiratory [system],” he said.
“I couldn’t breathe.”
“I really, literally, thought I was going to drown.”